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How Carbon Tax mess is distracting from realistic climate solutions

Emissions reductions appear to be at odds with consumer preference. This was part of the findings in a recent consumer behavior study by the Conference Boards of Canada’s Centre on the Low-carbon Growth Economy. It uses research and dialogue to inform an effective transition to a low-carbon future and sustainable economic growth in Canada

“One of the profound insights from our study is that most Canadian consumers would support a transition to a low-emissions economy,” says Dr. Ovo Adagha, a Senior Research Associate. More than 80 percent of study respondents felt it was every citizens’ responsibility to change their habits and reduce their carbon footprint. “Yet a third of the respondents are not willing to let go of their cars for the sake of reducing that footprint,” adds Roger Francis, Director of Energy, Environment and Transportation Policy. “That’s a pretty good indication of how transportation policy has yet to affect consumers behavior.

Francis thinks his study makes a case for more consumer-focused policy. “Many current policy practices seem disconnected from actual consumer goals,” he says and thinks there’s an opportunity to make the consumer a key part of the policy equation. And policies that develop a deep knowledge of consumer behavior could potentially accelerate the transition to a low-emissions economy (Source: Canadian Fuels Association, Ottawa)